Whether you’re a competitive athlete or fitness enthusiast, you want to make sure you’re performing at your best. While warm-up exercises may not necessarily build muscle or improve your athletic skills, they are vital to achieving peak athletic performance. Since October is National Physical Therapy Month, our team at Advance Physical Therapy would like to discuss the importance of warming up before strenuous athletic activity. Continue reading to learn more.
Importance of Warming Up
Before any type of meet or competition, skipping a warm-up can be tempting. However, running through a variety of warm-up techniques will help prime your muscles for high performance. Warm-ups prepare your muscles, heart, and lungs for strenuous activities. A proper warm-up activates the heat-dissipation mechanisms in your body, allowing it to cool and prevent overheating, which is crucial during demanding aerobic exercise. Here are some of the reasons why warm-ups are so important before a workout:
- Increased muscle and body temperature – A dynamic warm-up will increase your body and muscle temperature, increasing the amount of oxygen available to your muscles. This allows you to perform more strenuous activities with ease and minimizes the stress on your heart.
- Reduced risk of injury – The last thing any athlete wants after preparing for an upcoming event is to become injured. Warming up will improve your muscle elasticity, which helps you prevent injuries like a sprain or strain.
- Increased flexibility – Stretching should be performed in addition to your regular warm-up, as it increases oxygen-rich blood flow to the muscles and improves flexibility. Stretching after a dynamic warm-up can help you avoid injury.
- Improved mental preparedness – Jumping straight into a game without being prepared can throw your game off completely. You can use your warm-up time to get your head in the game and guarantee that your entire body will be ready to succeed.
There is no shortage of benefits associated with warming up. At Advance Physical Therapy, our team is here to help you achieve your athletic goals so you can play your best. We can show you how to prepare both physically and mentally and tackle any injuries if they come your way. To learn more about the significance of warming up, or to schedule an appointment, be sure to contact us today!